Leanardo Divinci (1452-1519)

Anthropology: What happened to our earlier ancestors?

Why did the other Hominids (Neanderthals and Homo Erectus) become extinct while the "Homo Imaginative Sapiens" survived and prospered?

The answer is - The earlier hominids and the archaic non-imaginative Homo Sapiens (the modern humans before they became imaginative) did not have the one trait that made the difference in their survival. Our distant cousins (Homo Erectus, Neanderthals, etc.) were able to survive for long periods of time but when they encountered overwhelming conditions that they could not handle they died off and became extinct. The one condition that they could not handle was the "Homo Imaginative Sapiens" tribes who were coming out of Africa around forty to fifty thousand years ago.

These new imaginative tribes (modern human Homo Sapiens) had lived in Africa for thousands of years after they had become imaginative, inventing languages, new tools and weapons during this time. They had multiplied and split into many new tribes over time. They became the dominant hominids in Africa wiping out the non-imaginative tribes as they settled the whole continent. The Homo Sapiens (imaginative and non-imaginative) did interbreed during this time and they all assimilated and became imaginative. Finally with the Homo erectus and Neanderthals gone the Homo Sapiens began to encounter more and more other imaginative tribes which were much harder to deal with.

All the imaginative tribes (Homo Imaginative Sapiens) were either descendants of or had interbred with the original imaginative Homo Sapiens tribe. They had multiplied and broken up into hundreds of tribes during this period. These Homo Sapiens tribes were all close cousins and were able to successfully interbreed with any other imaginative (Homo Sapiens) tribe and also with the non-imaginative Homo Sapiens who had not yet become imaginative. However they could not successfuly interbreed with their distant non-imaginative cousins, the Neanderthals and Homo Erectus tribes. This is an extremely important point. This was fatal for these non-imaginative tribes and would eventually cause their extinction.

When Africa became too crowded with other imaginative tribes homo sapiens (modern humans) they began to migrate out of Africa to greener pastures in Europe and Asia and eventually the rest of the world. They came out Africa fully imaginative with their superior technology (tools and weapons) and languages. They had become fierce predators during their time in Africa ready to fight anyone or anything they encountered. These new lands were full of game and food, ready for the taking.

A favorite sport these "Homo Imaginative Sapiens" migrants from Africa was attacking any Neanderthal or Homo Erectrus non-imaginative tribes they encountered, killing the men and capturing the women and children. This action proved fatal for the non-imaginative tribes. By kidnaping their women the Homo Sapien modern humans kept the women as mates and prevented them from mating with their own kind and since they were too distant cousins and could not interbreed wih their Homo Sapien captors, the non-imaginative tribes (Neanderthals & Homo Erectus) became dead ends for population reproduction, they dwindled in numbers and eventually became extinct.

Modern Humans were able to flourish because they had evolved a powerful new "Human Imagination". (I think our species is better described as the "Homo Imaginative Sapiens" rather then the "Homo Sapiens Sapiens"). Human Imagination is a combination of "creative imagination and learning imagination and it is the trait that distinguishes these imaginative tribes from the non-imaginative tribes.

All modern humans "Homo Imaginative Sapiens" have descended from a single tribe living in Africa. For some mysterious reason even though they had remained on the same intellectual level for thousands of centuries - between seventy and one hundred thousand years ago the children of this tribe, began to become imaginative. The children in this little tribe began to be "transformed" into imaginative beings.

These special children began to become smarter then their parents, this never happened before. The "transformation" was a very gradual process. The children as they grew up began to become more curious. They began to try to solve problems of things that bothered them. They were never quite satisfied with their status quo and always wanted to improve their conditions, especially if they were challenged. Better tools to hunt with and better weapons to fight with. This is still going on today. As adults they began to create and improve their tools, trinkets, etc. they began to progress. It happened very slowly over a period of many generations. A new powerful dimension, "Human Imagination" was being intoduced to the world. This new dimension, mankind's "Special Gift" has enabled mankind to adapt to conditions that had been overwhelming to our distant cousins. "Human Imagination" is mankind's defining trait.

The new powerful "Human Imagination" enabled mankind to adapt to new climates, design new weapons to defend themselves, find new foods to feed themselves. Modern humans' early imaginative ancestors were able to develop new words and languages that enabled them to communicate verbally, new abstract ideas among one another  (this is how the "MIND" of mankind came into being).

The "MIND" of Mankind comes into being.

The "MIND" of Mankind came into being as a result of modern humans becoming imaginative beings. The "MIND" of mankind is a mental power that has enabled our imaginative ancestors to invent languages and then communicate their ideas verbally to one another and build upon these new ideas and therefore to progress and survive adversity better. This mental power allowed mankind to invent, develop and improve technology over long periods of time using many "MINDs" to accomplish the task. Just one example of the "MIND" in action was the development of the telescope.

Over a period of centuries the "MIND" of mankind (many many people over long periods of time and distance) worked to develop clear glass suitable for seeing through, then learned how to grind the glass into a spy glass and then use the spy glass to invent a crude telescope, then improve the telescope, and finally look to the heavens and discover the moons of Jupiter and many other secret worlds of nature that no one had seen before nor had any idea that existed.

At present the "MIND" continues to develop and invent new innovations to the telescope to what has become the science of astronomy and to peer further and further into the distant heavens. It seems as though the "MIND" will never stop improving this science it had discovered and continues to improve. When I was in school in the 1930s the astronomers were not sure what these fuzzy nebula were that they saw in their weak telescopes of that time. Finally when more powerful telescopes were built, they could finally see that these fuzzy nebula were actually island universes that they named galaxies.

Larger and more sophisticated telescopes continue to come on line all over the world as humans peer deeper and deeper into the depths of the heavens. The ever curious "MIND" of mankind has recently discovered that the galaxies are accelerating outward rather then slowing as the astronomers had thought was the case. I had speculated about this finding in my book two years before the astronomers discovered this acceleration actually was the case.

This is just one case of the "MIND" of mankind's progress as it continuously probes, discovers and improves new technology in every field of science, technology, philosophy, etc.. The "MIND" is the intellectual power of all of mankind combined into one giant mental imaginative "MIND" of mankind. Its ability to communicate abstract thoughts verbally with other "MINDs" among one another across time and space has made this possible.

The special gift of a powerful human imagination allowed mankind to began to migrate out of their ancestoral territory into vast new lands, adapting to the new conditions as they came upon them. Other hominids and archaic homo sapiens had also migrated out of Africa and had been successful for long periods of time but were eventually overwhelmed or assimulated by our imaginative ancestors and became extinct. Our imaginative ancestors were the only Homo species to successfuly spread out over the planet and flourish. While the Homo Erectus and Neanderthal species floundered and became extinct mankind's imaginative tribes flourished and multiplied, there are now over six billion people on the planet today.

All this was made possible only because of our "Special Gift" Human Imagination. We had become the "Homo Imaginative Sapiens", the only surviving Homo species on planet Earth. However there may be some remotely isolated archaic non-imaginative Neandertal, Homo Erectus or Homo Sapiens tribes that still exist somewhere on the planet today.

© by Donald Louis Hamilton - author of The Mind of Mankind


Human Imagination -
The source of Mankindís tremendous power!

Donald Louis Hamilton

ISBN 09649265-1-2, 210 pages, $12.95  trade paperback.

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  •  "The Mind of Mankind" explores the unique ability of the mind to form a mental image - to imagine.  Mr Hamilton discusses current theories as well as mysteries and introduces new ones from his fertile imagination for us to ponder, consider, accept or reject.
    Richard Fuller,   Senior Editor - Metaphysical Reviews

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